Another Day, Another Doctor-Fraudster Convicted – This One in Los Angeles

fraud doc steth art

In U.S. District Court in Los Angeles Doctor Sri Jayantha Wijegoonaratna has been found guilty of six felony counts of Health Care Fraud and another count of Conspiracy.

According to a U.S. Attorney press release, Wijegoonaratna, age 58, was a key player in an insurance scam with co-conspirators 48-year-old Heidi Morishita of Valencia, and 49-year-old Godwin Onyeabor of Ontario, who were also found guilty. The scam involved a number of crimes, including illegally prescribing expensive electric wheelchairs to patients who had no need for them, then billing Medicare for more than $1,500,000, in an ongoing insurance theft that began in January, 2007 and last for five years.

Wijegoonaratna was born in Sri Lanka and is now a resident of Anaheim Hills.

Investigators were able to prove that Onyeabor, a manager at Fendih Medical Supply in San Bernardino, paid cash kickbacks to Doctor Wijegoonaratna and Morishita in exchange for fraudulent prescriptions for medical equipment, including the wheelchairs, which generally cost more than $6,000 each.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles stated all three defendants could receive 10 year prison sentences for each count. They are scheduled to be sentenced in September.

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In keeping with his Third World Assassin status, Wijegoonaratna emigrated to the United States after graduating from Columbo University Medical School in Sri Lanka in 1980.

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So Who Killed Doctor Uta von Schwedler? Police Say It’s Another Doctor

A Salt Lake City physician was taken into custody Friday and the district attorney believes that he is the person who murdered his ex-wife in September, 2011.

Dr Uta von Schwedler

Dr Uta von Schwedler

Doctor John B Wall, age 49, was charged in Utah’s 3rd District Court with premeditated Murder and Burglary, in the death of Uta von Schwedler, also 49.

Dr John Brickman Wall

Dr John Brickman Wall

The body of Dr. von Schwedler, who was a biology scientist at the University of Utah, was found under water in the bathtub of her home, in south Salt Lake City.

Authorities state it has taken nearly three years to piece together the evidence linking Wall to von Schwedler’s death, because early indications were that she might have died as the result of a suicide.

But investigators state evidence found in the home included traces of Wall’s DNA, as well as signs of a violent assault. Detectives were able to eliminate suicide as the cause of death. And witnesses will testify that in the hours and days following von Schwedler’s death, Wall’s behavior became increasingly strange.

Margaret Olson, the lawyer for the couple’s 19-year-old son Pelle Wall, made this statement:

“The arrest of John Wall for the murder of Uta von Schwedler is a long-awaited moment for those who loved Uta, in their quest for justice. We are confident justice will ultimately be served.”

Wall faces 15 years to life in prison if convicted.

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We find it regretful that John Wall, MD is a graduate of the same medical school we are: University of California, San Diego, in 1995.

What Do Medicine’s Monsters Look Like? Well, Here’s One . . .

Mr. McDonald & Medical Miscreants, Inc:

“Would you please share this story and get the word out. Whether you think all abortionists are going to hell, or that a child only becomes “human” after the magical barrier of 24 weeks, we can all agree that this man is evil. He is wrong, and as a society, we must not be caught doing nothing.”

James Velasquez

James Velasquez
Investigative Journalist
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“Among the relatively few cases that could be specifically documented, one was Baby Boy A. His 17-year-old mother was almost 30 weeks pregnant – seven and a half months – when labor was induced. An employee estimated his birth weight as approaching six pounds. He was breathing and moving when Dr. Gosnell severed his spine and put the body in a plastic shoebox for disposal.” (A clinic staff member, testifying in the Gosnell trial in Philadelphia)

Dr Kermit Gosnell

Dr Kermit Gosnell

As was his wont, Dr. Kermit B. Gosnell would try to lighten the mood with a bit joking. Boy A was, he said, “big enough to walk me to the bus stop.”

But Boy A will never have that chance. The good doctor saw to that.

Dr. Gosnell was the operator of an abortion mill – this was no clinic – located in West Philadelphia, called the Women’s Medical Society and set up in 1972. He was a product of the local neighborhood, and he had spent almost four decades running his establishment – “giving back” to the community he grew up in.

Dr. Kermit Gosnell's proud handiwork

Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s proud handiwork

Of course, he had a peculiar form of charity: “Infant beheadings. Severed baby feet in jars. A child screaming after it was delivered alive during an abortion procedure.”  Gosnell’s mill was known for its willingness to carry out late-term abortions – the illegal practice of killing a child after the initial 24 weeks of pregnancy.  Indeed, as word spread about the doctor’s services, women would come from all around to enjoy the benefit of his service.

“His patients came from several states,” the Grand Jury Report notes. “Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina, ans throughout Pennsylvania.”

Despite the popularity, Dr. Gosnell’s offices were far from presentable.

One snip of the scissors and it's like bowling for dollars

Cutting infant spinal chords with scissors – just another day at work for a doctor with the ‘God Complex’

“There was blood on the floor,” witnesses reported. “A stench of urine filled the air. A flea-infested cat was wandering through the facility, and there were cat feces on the stairs. Semi-conscious women scheduled for abortions were moaning in the waiting room or the recovery room, where they sat on dirty recliners covered with blood-stained blankets.”

But despite the awful conditions, the illegal practices, and the innumerable women and children who were both injured and killed as a result of Gosnell’s actions, the man was still able to operate for almost 40 years. The reason is a combination of politics, prejudice, and plain negligence.

After approving the Women’s Medical Society to open an abortion clinic in 1979, the Pennsylvania Department of Health apparently conducted no site reviews for another 10 years. In both 1992 and 1993, Gosnell’s mill was guilty of “numerous violations,” but allowed to stay open on the promise that he would go about fixing them.

Despite countless appeals, complaints, warnings, and deaths, the Gosnell mill continued to operate until February 18, 2010, when an FBI raid of the offices was executed on reports of “illegal prescription activity.” What they found, of course, was much worse.

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The official trial of Kermit Gosnell opened on March 18 this year, to something of a major media blackout. While it is not surprising that our friends on the left want to avoid this incident, it does occasionally hurt to have such suspicions confirmed. He faced seven counts of first-degree murder and multiple counts of “conspiracy, criminal solicitation and violation of a state law” forbidding abortions after 24 weeks.

But to end on a personal note: this is an awful, terrible story. There is no redemption to it. Lives were ended in the most disgraceful of ways. As human beings, we attach meaning to the deaths of loved ones because we see meaning in their lives; so when a life ends, something truly significant is lost. We are even known to bury our pets with love and ceremony: it is a part of the human elevation of being. It is part of our unique place in the world.

Gosnell saw none of that. He joked as his drove scissors into the backs of baby necks; kept parts of human beings stored away in jars, shoeboxes, or plastic bags piled up in the basement; let newborns drop into toilets so that they would occasionally clog up the plumbing. He did this for himself – his own greed and glee.

Thank you for printing this story. So few citizens are aware of the medical monsters, playing God, hiding behind the dignity of a lab coat.

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Mr. Velasquez – We are proud to include your story on our site. Kermit Gosnell is the pluperfect example as to why MedicalMiscreants was created in the first place.

The swathe of destruction carved through society by lab coat lunatics – and the blind eyes of those in position to stop them – is appalling beyond belief.

Here’s more on this horrific case:  http://abcnews.go.com/US/abortion-doctor-kermit-gosnell-ends-defense-witnesses/story?id=19031475

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Wanna Know What Really Bugs Us?

Bedbugs Penny

Well, here’s a neat thought:

If you are a regular reader of Medical Miscreants, you already know that errant “health care” in the U.S. is killing 400+ citizens every day of the year.

What you may not know is that a survey by the National Pest Management Association (please scroll down to page 6) was released this week, and it’s findings just might make your skin crawl. Their report reveals that pest control companies nationwide are being called by hospitals for bedbug infestations at an ever-increasing rate. In fact, their calls for service from hospitals have doubled in just the last 10 years.

bedbug thumb

Outside of hospitals – say in less-than-tidy motels – bedbugs rarely transmit infections from one person to another. What they do is bite into your skin and suck on your blood. This leaves itchy little scabs that eventually go away.

But in a hospital bed?

Well, your itchy little bedbug bites become an open door to nosacomial  infections – which are hospital-acquired bacteria. And nosacomials – in case you don’t know – are one of medicines’ deadliest secrets, because they kill 1,000 patients per week.

Bedbug bites

Dr. Dick Zoutman, infectious disease specialist at Queen’s University in Ontario, Canada, said, “Bedbugs, particularly the eggs, are even harder to kill than the spores of the bacteria already found in hospitals. I wouldn’t have thought that to be the case.”

Here’s what infection control expert Doctor Jorge Parada of Loyola University Health System in Chicago had to say:

“Bedbugs are especially problematic in hospitals, where there is a greater likelihood of catching the highly contagious staph infection known as MRSA. You don’t need one more ingredient to increase your risk of infections in the hospital, which is already a very real danger,” he stated.

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Observation:

You might want to take a peek at this, and then ask yourself why the ‘Health Care Reform’ debates included absolutely nothing on this horrific reality:

http://www.hospitalinfection.org/

How to Get Rich in Medicine? Easy. Cut Holes in Patients’ Throats – Then Treat Their Complications

Federal Prosecutors in Chicago believe they have enough evidence to convict a team of doctors – as well as a hospital owner – of the monstrous crime of cutting patients’ throats for profit.

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Sacred Heart Hospital

Sacred Heart Hospital: They took the term “cut-throat” business tactics literally

A two-year investigation of Sacred Heart Hospital resulted in the arrests this month of the hospital’s owner, Edward Novak, age 58 of Park Ridge, and five doctors on an array of charges, including conspiracy to defraud Medicare, among other crimes.

According to investigators, the small, 94-bed hospital located on Chicago’s west side was raided by the FBI last Tuesday morning. They carried out numerous boxes of evidence, as well as seizing approximately $2,000,000 in Medicare reimbursement payments from multiple bank accounts.

Authorities stated they made the decision to proceed quickly after learning that unnecessary procedures were being done and patient safety was at stake.

What would you say is appropriate punishment for people who cut holes in patient's throats in order to get rich? You tell us.

What would you say is appropriate punishment for people who cut holes in patients’ throats in order to get rich? You tell us.

The indictment states that the death rate by the arrested doctors for patients undergoing  tracheotomies was three times higher than normal.

The Illinois Public Health Department released a statement that they are conducting a detailed inspection to determine whether Sacred Heart Hospital can properly treat patients at all.

Gary Shapiro, U.S. attorney in Cook County, said this: “When we learned of these procedures, we did everything we could to stop them from happening.”

The following physicians were taken into custody by federal agents:

Doctor Venkateswara Kuchipudi, age 66

Doctor Percy Conrad May Jr., 75

Doctor Subir Maitra, 73

Doctor Shanin Moshiri, 57

Doctor Kenneth Nave, 50.

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Another Day – Another ‘Trust Me’ Thief in a Lab Coat . . .

Louisiana specialist pleads guilty to health care fraud

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Dr Lynn E. Foret

Dr Lynn E. Foret

At a press conference outside a U.S. District Court yesterday, Federal Prosecutor Stephanie Finley reported that a physician has pleaded guilty of insurance theft that netted him nearly a $1,000,000.

According to Prosecutor Finley, Doctor Lynn E. Foret, age 63 of Lake Charles, routinely and deliberately over-billed Medicare, Medicaid and other insurance payors, over a seven-year period between 2003-2009.

Finley stated that Foret would pretend to inject the knees of patients diagnosed with arthritis, with an expensive medication called Hyalgen. In fact, he administered a less effective, less costly steroid. He would then falsely bill for Hyalgen and profit from the difference.

Had he not stooped to flat-out greed, this clinic might have continued

Had he not stooped to flat-out greed, this clinic might have continued

The prosecution was able to prove that, “During the time period outlined in the complaint, this doctor was illegally reimbursed $948,249.11.”

Foret, who could get 10 years in federal prison, had been an orthopedic surgeon for 35 years. His clinic was shut down in December, 2012.

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Observations:

Before he made the decision to become a thief, Foret MD was actually known for more noble accomplishments. He graduated from LSU Medical School in New Orleans in 1975, and things were looking up.

He was a member of the U.S. Army Medical Corp in Hawaii, Texas and Missouri. He was the President of the Southwest Louisiana Med School Alumni Association and was affiliated with Christus St. Patrick Hospital/Center for Orthopaedics, as well as Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Lake Charles.

 We at Medical Miscreants sincerely thank the following for their efforts in this case:

The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, operated by the Louisiana State Attorney General; the FBI, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General, lead in the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kelly Uebinger prosecuted the case.

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“America’s Dumbest Doctors: Ever wonder about yours?

Tribute Books logo

“America’s Dumbest Doctors” 

Book review by Nicole Langan

Did your neighbor or coworker make our list?

Is your doctor in this book?

Sometimes you’re just in sync with the universe. As I was reading Patrick McDonald’s America’s Dumbest Doctors, a story appeared in my local newspaper entitled “Alleged Victim Testifies at Surgeon’s Assault Trial.” The story related how a doctor became enraged when his date danced with an elderly man at an Italian restaurant, where the couple had stopped for drinks.

On the way home, the doctor pulled into a car wash parking lot where he proceeded to drag the woman from the car, kicking her several times in the back. Police later found the woman at a nearby gas station where a 911 call had been placed from a pay phone. The woman did not press charges, but the detective assigned to the case charged the doctor with Assault after reviewing pictures the woman had taken of bruises on her body. The doctor has since left town, but he continues to practice medicine in a nearby metropolitan area. His trial is currently underway.

When I first picked up this book, I thought, “Well this collection of stories is horrifying, but these things don’t happen where I live.”

As the above newspaper story illustrates, I couldn’t have been more wrong. McDonald, at the onset of his work, wonders why no one has ever written a comprehensive book on the bad behavior of doctors. As San Diego’s first EMS supervisor, he was exposed to the misdeeds of a profession whose members consider themselves beyond reproach. What is truly frightening is that these rogue doctors violate a sacred trust. They are not scheming Wall Street tycoons or common thugs. They are who we turn to when things go wrong. We entrust our very being into their hands. It is an intimate connection that is severed by these doctors who willfully turn their backs on the Hippocratic Oath.

McDonald peppers his text with interesting tidbits. He states, “We have 100,000+ working physicians in this country within the IQ ranges of janitors and farmhands.” The book’s premise is supported through numerous examples of news headlines taken from across the country. Doctors are charged with murder, rape, drug trafficking, insurance fraud, child molestation, medical malpractice, sexual harassment, money laundering – the list goes on and on.

The misbehavior of thousands of doctors has consequences for the entire medical field. Medical mistakes and fraud raise insurance rates. One headline states, “Surgical mistakes cost insurance companies 1.5 billion dollars annually.” Another relates, “4,600 American hospitals scam insurance plans.” While doctors’ mistreatment of nurses leave hospitals understaffed. A supporting headline states, “Abusive docs are driving out nurses.” Another proclaims, “429,000 nurses a year are victims of assault. Too many are by doctors.”

Readers will recognize famous cases such as the Texas MD who deliberately ran down her philandering physician-husband with her Mercedes in a hotel parking lot. Another being the doctor who blew up his New York City apartment building when he tampered with a gas line because he was angry with his estranged wife. Others are more obscure like the doctor dressed as Captain America who assaulted a woman at a bar with a burrito stuffed down his crotch. While an OB-GYN in California used secret cameras hidden in his shirt and in the air vent above the examination table to film teenage patients during breast and pelvic exams.

After reading this book, it is inevitable that you will never look at your physician the same way.

America’s Dumbest Doctors by K. Patrick McDonald is available at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle, as well as Barnes & Noble.

3 comments:

Sharon

“Do I really have a right to laugh out loud at these appalling stories?”

That was my question, as I sat stunned at not only the audacity of these people in the book, but the sheer numbers of them.

I’d heard the author speak on the Coping With Caregiving radio show, and I must say I was certain he was exagerating. I could not have been more offbase. This book should be required reading in every medical ethics course in America. For our own safety, citizens ought to read it, but physicians should be FORCED to. I plan to carry my copy of this book to each medical appointment I ever go to. Wow.

J.W. Nicklaus

I actually like my doctor, but I rarely visit him. After reading this review, perhaps that’s a good thing for more reasons than just my health.

I already have a deep-rooted aversion to salespeople–must I loathe doctors as well?

Your review makes the book reminiscent of a train wreck–you don’t want to look, but you can’t help yourself. It’s simultaneously horrifying and mesmerizing.

Anonymous

I’m a relatively new graduate fortunate enough to have been hired last year by the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Here at Mayo, I’d guess very little of these kinds of shenanigans go on. I suspect much of the misbehavior occurs at less-regulated institutions, where the majority of MDs on staff are contract, and not directly employed.

That said, my years in med school offered considerable proof that, yes, wackos in lab coats are hardly a rare commodity, and some “off-campus” behavior borders insanity.

In spite of my love for what we doctors do, I found myself buying the book, reluctantly, and relating stories from it to my friends. Our consensus is, “Well, there but for the grace of Buddha . . . .”

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